If you’re new to Adelaide, you may not yet know that the city is known as the ‘Festival City’. Throughout the year, the South Australian capital hosts dozens of festivals, including the beloved and world-famous Adelaide Fringe, which has been bringing together the finest artists from cabaret singers and circus performers, to sculptors and street artists, for nearly 60 years.
Among Adelaide’s best festivals are its film festivals, proving it’s not just bigger cities like Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane that get all of the film fun. In 2016, Adelaide celebrated record-breaking numbers attending its festivals, thanks in part to those listed below. These film festivals are just a small sample of what Adelaide has to offer for film-lovers in need of a study break. You may even meet some like-minded film-lovers who love to chat about all things movies.
Adelaide Film Festival
The Adelaide Film Festival (ADL Film Fest) has been building a reputation since being listed by Variety magazine as one of the ‘50 Unmissable Film Festivals’ in the world after its inception in 2003. ADL Film Fest has since expanded to an annual celebration of cinema in October showcasing a diverse range of local and international films. The 2018 festival will screen a selection of the greatest Australian films ever made as voted by the public, which is a great way to learn about local film history.
This is Australia’s premier international arts festival focused on the cultural hub of Asia. With its mix of dance, theatre, panels and talks, visual arts and music, OzAsia is bursting with incredible content.
Its film festival features an excellent selection of films that have stunned audiences in their home countries and at major film festivals across the globe. OzAsia’s most recent line-up included the road trip drama Pop Aye from Thailand (which was a hit at the Sundance Film Festival), the visually bold Chinese feature I Am Not Madame Bovary made by superstar director Feng Xiaogang, and the Korean action film The Villainess. OzAsia is one of Adelaide’s best ways to see the Asian films that have the world talking.
Greek Film Festival
The Greek film industry has surged in the last decade thanks to filmmakers like Yorgos Lanthimos (Dogtooth, The Lobster, The Killing of a Sacred Deer) and Athina Rachel Tsangari (Attenberg, Chevalier). At the Greek Film Festival, you’ll get the chance to discover more about the talent emerging out of Greece.
SAGA: Adelaide International Women’s Film Festival
Important festivals like SAGA exist to shine a spotlight on the incredible works of art created by women. Aimed at advancing the work of female creatives, SAGA was built from the grassroots level and offers audiences a unique point of view of the world around them. It may just inspire the next Jane Campion or Sofia Coppola.
Transitions Film Festival
Hosted at the Mercury Cinema, the environmentally conscious Transitions Film Festival comes to Adelaide for ten days in May. Topics such as climate change, animal protection, and grassroots activism feature prominently at this festival that tries to inspire and revolutionise environmentalism with a collection of engrossing documentaries.
Lebanese Film Festival
The Lebanese Film Festival‘s mission has been to bring rarely seen Lebanese cinema to Australian screens and offer audiences a fascinating glimpse into Lebanese culture. And while this festival has a much larger program in Sydney, it does offer Adelaide audiences a mini-program for its growing Lebanese community.
Palace International Film Festivals
The Palace Cinema chain continues to expand its selection of cultural film festivals that are held throughout the year at the multiple Palace Cinemas across the country. Showcasing film cultures from some of the most exciting countries for movie-lovers, Adelaide hosts seasons of Palace festivals including the Spanish Film Festival, German Film Festival, Volvo Scandinavian Film Festival, Lavazza Italian Film Festival and the British Film Festival.